[WikiEN-l] Why has everything gone to hell?

The Cunctator cunctator at gmail.com
Tue Feb 7 02:49:53 UTC 2006

On 2/6/06, Ilya N. <ilyanep at gmail.com> wrote:
> I'm afraid I must agree.
> As an editor of 3 years I must ask what happened to writing an encyclopedia?
> How come we become more about community just because we're in the top-20 of
> internet sites?
> I must say that the community has started trudging along and becoming more
> venomous over the last few months to a year.
> If it were me I'd say delete all userboxes except for the babels and mandate
> that users spend more attention on articles and meta issues relating *directly
> to articles
> *
> I don't remember any wars on the term 'fuckwit' but I remember many other
> wars. I also remember before then when Wikipedia stood together in the fact
> of things like vandalism and community upsets. Maybe that time is gone?
> Ugh!
> On 2/6/06, Alex Schenck <linuxbeak at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > It's about friggin' time that something was done about wheel warring.
> >
> > I notice that Wikipedia goes through various "stages" in which the
> > community
> > will focus on one specific issue. A few months ago it was the term
> > "fuckwit". Not all that long ago it was pedophilia (looks like it's back).
> > Then it was the ever-lasting accusations of cabalism. Now it's wheel
> > warring.
> >
> > Alright, look. I came back from a two-week break to witness the explosion
> > of
> > the wheel warring crap. From what Jimbo has said to me, he is very tired
> > of
> > the lack of cooperation that used to exist. What ever happened to that
> > sense
> > of respect for each other, when people actually understood that Jimbo's
> > word
> > was final, that the ArbCom is in fact the judicary body that knew what
> > they
> > were talking about, and people would respect time on the project? I mean,
> > come on. When people start giving out USER WARNINGS to people such as
> > David
> > Gerard, you can tell that the times have definitely changed, and some
> > oldy-moldy (or at least somewhat oldy-moldy editors such as myself) are
> > not
> > liking what we see.
> >
> > Mindspillage and I are on the same wavelength (I'll let her speak for
> > herself beyond that): we miss the old community that was focused more on
> > writing an encyclopedia instead of focusing on user pages and userboxes.
> > What ever happened to writing FEATURED ARTICLES? Instead, we have people
> > more focused on userboxes ("this user rebelled against the great userbox
> > purge of 2006 [redirect to RFC:kelly martin] and would do it again"...
> > wtf!)
> > and arguing with others.
> >
> > At this point, I'm afraid desysopping people would be like placing a
> > band-aid on an artery wound. Why has the community changed instead of
> > adapted? We're not myspace, we're Wikipedia. Can we keep it that way?
> >
> > Here ends my long and horrible rant.
> >
Userboxes freak me out too. I don't know that it's become more or less
venomous (at least towards me) -- my criticisms of problems with
Wikipedia seem to still generate similar responses of either praise or
threats to block me and claims of trolling. The difference is that
back in the day only LMS could make threats -- now there's bunches of
people, like arbitrators, who really should avoid making threats
unless they're officially notified. Though I know that's difficult,
since what makes one a good or willing arbitrator is some degree of
willingness to police the land.

There's getting to be a loooot of cruft though. I personally think
that articles should not be allowed to have warnings. Not sure about
the userboxes -- there do need to be ways of coordinating the
community, and mechanisms of "tagging" obviously work super well (see
Flickr) and are very wikilike. Perhaps a semi-official third party
site would be best.

I know we're not myspace, but we shouldn't ignore the successes of
other web-projects.

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